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Asylum-seekers test positive for COVID-19 in Texas

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108 asylum-seekers have reportedly tested positive for coronavirus in Brownsville, TX since they began administering COVID-19 tests on Jan. 25, which is 6.3% of those who took the test, a spokesperson for Brownsville confirmed.

The city of Brownsville administers these rapid tests at the bus station, after migrant families are released by the Border Patrol, according to NBC News.

A Brownsville city spokesperson said in an email obtained by NBC News that the city does not have the authority to retain these migrants who plan to travel to cities throughout the country. The spokesperson assured that municipal workers recommend to those who test positive to keep quarantine as indicated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“The City of Brownsville continues to follow all guidelines provided by the CDC and DSHS (Department of State Health Services) for Covid-19. The migrants who test positive at the B-Metro facility are advised of quarantine procedures and are asked to socially distance,” Felipe Romero, Brownsville’s communications and marketing director, said in an emailed statement.

“There are several NGOs providing resources to a positive case,” the email continues. “For example, organizations help with quarantine either in a shelter or at hotel. Since the City started testing the migrants on January 25, there has been 6.3% of positive cases. The Cameron County positivity rate is 13.8%.”

At least eight asylum-seekers tested positive for COVID-19 in Brownsville, Tx Tuesday after crossing the Rio Grande border Monday.

Miriam Izaguirre, a 35-year-old asylum-seeker from Honduras, crossed the Rio Grande border on Monday with her son and turned herself in to the authorities, NBC News reported.

Izaguirre was then tested for coronavirus at the Brownsville bus station. As she was waiting to catch a bus to Houston, her test results came back positive.

“Right now we were tested for Covid and they separated about eight of us because we were positive,” Izaguirre told Noticias Telemundo Investiga. “We are waiting right now.”

Other migrant families who were waiting to travel to North Carolina, Maryland and New Jersey, also tested positive.

Several of the asylum-seekers who tested positive told Noticias Telemundo Investiga they were still planning to travel to their destinations, despite the positive COVID-19 results.

Eva Orellana, an asylum-seeker from Honduras who tested positive, said she was going to take the bus to North Carolina with her 3-year-old daughter. “On the way, we were wearing a mask all the time, gel, washing our hands,” she said. “Really, I don’t feel anything.”

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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Trump: Tanks to Ukraine could escalate to use of ‘NUKES’

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Former President Donald Trump stated bluntly on Truth Social,  “FIRST COME THE TANKS, THEN COME THE NUKES. Get this crazy war ended, NOW. So easy to do!”

Trump was referring to the escalation of war in Ukraine. He, like many other commentators and lawmakers, are warning that the decision to continue sending weapons – and now tanks – could potentially lead to the use of “nuclear weapons.”

It’s mission creep and it’s dangerous, they say.

Why? Because Russian President Valdimir Putin has indicated in two different speeches that he would use nuclear weapons to defend Russia, if needed. Those warnings are not just bluster but a very real possibility.

And the escalation of war is visible.

Russia launched 55 missiles strikes across Ukraine Thursday, leaving 11 dead. The strikes come one day after the United States and Germany agreed to send tanks to Ukraine in an effort to aide the country. 47 of the 55 missiles were shot down according to Ukraine’s Air Force command.

Eleven lives were lost and another 11 were injured additionally leaving 35 buildings damaged in the wake of the attacks. According to The New York Times, Denys Shmyhal, said in a post on Telegram. “The main goal is energy facilities, providing Ukrainians with light and heat,” he said.

Ukraine is now demanding that they need F-16 fighter jets. In a post on twitter Ukrainian lawmaker, Oleksiy Goncharenko said, “Missiles again over Ukraine. We need F16.”

The US has abstained from sending advanced jets in the chances that a volatile decision could foster more dangerous attacks like former President Trump’s post on Truth referred to. If the US did authorize the decision to lend Ukraine the F-16 jets Netherlands’ foreign minister, Wopke Hoekstra, would be willing to supply them. According to The New York Times, Hoekstra told Dutch lawmakers, “We are open-minded… There are no taboos.”

F-16 fighter jets are complex to work on, they are not the average aircraft that can be learned in a matter of weeks. It can take months for pilots to learn how to fly these birds. European and US officials have the concern that Ukrainian forces could potentially use the jets to fly into Russian airspace and launch attacks on Russian soil.

Western allies are trying to avoid such a provocation, because that could lead to nuclear warfare in reference to what Putin has said he would do to defend his country.

 

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